I have always tried to maintain a balanced position. I don’t see myself as an extremist. That said, I understand that life must have its ups and downs in order for things to stay interesting, I just don’t think that I need to be the one implementing those ups and downs. Life and nature have this way of presenting hardship and obstacles without any added assistance from me. I like to remain reasonably calm and only have a tendency to get worked up when someone or something else does something to me to upend that inner peace.
Humanity has, for as long as I can remember, always been antagonistic towards itself. Many say that this is the way of the world, that there will always be “good” people and “bad” people. However the concept of good and bad is always in the eye of the beholder. We need look no further than any war or conflict to see two sides, both of whom think THEY are the good ones.
When I was in my early 20’s I read about the Holocaust and the killing of over 6 million Jews by the Germans. I also read about other historical atrocities and believed, naively so, that, since these events had happened, these sorts of behaviors were past tense, ancient artifacts of growing civilization. Growing pains. It didn’t seem possible or even intelligent that a modern population could consider behaving in such an archaic and primitive manner. We’ve put people on the moon for fuck’s sake, why would we continue to annihilate each other.
Oh yeah, the military industrial complex. Money, Greed, Power. Sorry, I forgot.
I thought humanity had moved on from these sorts of behaviors and that it had become common knowledge that anyone who did behave in this fashion was an enemy of humanity and needed to be put down. It was sometime in the 90’s after I starting reading Noam Chomsky and Naomi Klein that I came to understand that other more recent genocides had been committed. The most shocking thing about these revelations was that they had been committed not by some country or group that my country viewed as hostile, but, in fact, by my own country and it’s allies for the purposes of laying the foundations for capitalism.
Ah isms. They have so much to answer for. So many different kinds of isms out there, all designed to put humans at odds with each other. I’ve always looked at Isms as the playthings of the Plutocracy and Oligarchs. Humans need something to keep them occupied, so those who have manipulated the population and the psychological landscape to make themselves stinking rich continuously put forward new and more complex Isms for humanity to play with. It’s like a big board game with a stack of playing cards.
One stack of cards, the political ideology set, have words on them like Anarchism, Socialism, Communism, Capitalism, Authoritarianism, Totalitarianism, Fascism, Environmentalism, Feminism, etcetera. There is another stack of ism cards, the religious ideology set, that contains cards like Catholicism, Judaism, Buddhism, Taoism, Existentialism, Hedonism and Islam, which is an ism with a “la” thrown in the middle to try and throw you off and make it think it is something different, but it’s not.
I have always believed myself to be open minded, forward thinking and willing to consider the argument of any ism. All too often I gleen the best part of any particular ism and integrate into my own belief system that I appropriately call “Ismism”. This, in no uncertain terms, makes me an ‘Ismismist” and, as such, I find myself with my feet firmly planted in what many would call the middle.
The middle is a great place because it is populated by the majority. In my opinion the middle allows the majority to define the bounds of reason and reason dictates that we must all live in harmony with one another so that we can battle the obstacles put in play by nature and the rest of the universe. It is an unfortunate truth that the middle must endure the extremists who continuously attack the middle in their desperate attempts to maintain the archaic idea that humanity must be at eternal war with itself.
Extremists (read pessimists) please note: We, the middle, have enough problems coping with climate change, meteors, disease, tsunamis and the like without having to endure you so, please, grow up an get with the program elsewise evolution will do what it does and make you extinct.
Consider as my final presentation on the matter, this, what I would call “The Yin and Yang of it All”. If you take the symbol of the yin yang, duplicate it, then flip the duplicate over and place it on the original copy, remove all the colours and lines except for those lines that start and end at the very middle you end up with a figure eight. Then turn that figure eight on its side and you end up with a something very similar to the symbol for infinity. At the place where the lines intersect, in the middle, is the center of all things, the perfect balance and THAT is where I want to live. At the center of infinity.